Acupuncture and Hot Flashes
By Shasta Tierra on Thursday, April 20, 2006
What causes them?
In Western Medicine (WM) hot flashes are caused from an imbalance of hormones. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) hot flashes are caused from an imbalance of Yin and Yang.
What is Yin and Yang?
In Basic terms, Yin equals everything cool and nourishing. While Yang represents every- thing warm and functioning, similar to water and fire.
How does Yin and Yang relate to Hot Flashes?
In the body Yin (Cold) and Yang (Heat) try to maintain balance with one another. If Yin (the cold aspect of the body) becomes weak or deficient, Yang (the heat) will become more dominant and will rise up to the face creating a hot flash. Think of a pot of boiling water that is partially covered only allowing a little steam out, that little steam is what warms your face. Now just think if that cover is removed all of the steam rushes out, that is a hot flash. Yin was the lid and Yang was the steam.
Can anyone get Hot Flashes?
Yes! Men and women both get hot flashes. Women have a tendency of getting Hot Flashes more than men.
Women menstruate. When digestion slows down in our thirties our ability to generate blood (Yin) diminishes. In females blood further becomes diminished due to menstruation and an imbalance of Yin and Yang is created, leaving the body with Yin Deficiency. It is at this time hot flashes begin to occur in women.
What symptoms usually come with Hot Flashes?
Night sweats, anxiety, dryness, depression, poor appetite, pale nails, lower back pain, low sex drive, fatigue, poor sleep, and headaches.
What can be done for Hot Flashes?
Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine is very effective in treating Hot Flashes and the subsequent symptoms. Each person presents a different level of imbalance and must be treated accordingly. For example, one individual may be under extreme stress and working late into the early mornings, therefore depriving their bodies of sleep leading to Hot Flashes. While another individual may be in their early forties and just starting to have more menopausal symptoms like Hot Flashes, lower back pain, night sweats, mood swings, excessive worry, and dry skin. Now both people are experiencing Hot Flashes, however the root cause is much different. Therefore, each person should be treated with a different set of acupuncture points and a different set of herbal formulas.
If you are experiencing Hot Flashes and want an alternative to Hormone Replacement Therapy call me at 408-615-1995
Lifestyle choices you can make to reduce Hot Flashes
- Eat a variety of foods and at regular times throughout the day
- Twenty to thirty minute walks, daily (improves circulation, reduces stress)
- 5 to 15 minutes of just sitting and breathing a couple of times a day (reduces stress)
- Go to sleep between 9:00 PM and 10:00 PM
- Wake up at sunrise
- Avoid stimulants (coffee, alcohol, drugs). Stimulants increase stress creating Hot Flashes